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Set in the 1950s when Stalin was in power, this thoughtful Polish story is an autobiographical account of filmmaker Krzysztof Zanussi's childhood. Hubert is a normal young boy living with his mother in the country. His father has been living in England since the war's end.
As a result, the Communists frequently harass them to the point that Hubert's mother sends him to his eccentric Aunt Ida in Warsaw to insure that he gets an education. Ida welcomes her nephew and to help him get along teaches him the art of outwardly toeing the Communist Party line to survive.
Ida is shrewd, charming and manipulative, qualities she uses to deftly exploit the government at every turn. The title refers to horseback riding, an activity that both Ida and Hubert enjoy.